Robotic process automation (RPA) eliminates mundane tasks, shifting corporate employees’ focus to more meaningful work. More and more CIOs are turning to an RPA to streamline operations, reduce costs, accelerate digital transformation and keep up with the ever-changing business world. With RPA, companies can automate routine, rule-based business processes, enabling employees to devote more time to customer service or higher-value tasks. Others see RPA as a temporary stop on the road to intelligent automation through machine learning (ML) and artificial intelligence (AI) tools trained to infer future results.
Let’s look at what robotic process automation stands for, what benefits it can bring to your business, whether it will enhance human worker’s productivity, and what RPA means for the future.
RPA doesn’t mean that robots replace humans in the workplace. In fact, there aren’t even any robots in this automation program.
What is RPA? Robotic process automation (RPA) is an application of technology intended to automate business processes, allowing a digital workforce to work side by side with human employees. RPA software enables businesses to capture and interpret information for tasks — processing a transaction, modifying data, triggering responses, or communicating with other software.
According to Grand View Research, the key demand of organizations for RPA is the automation of structured processes. Allowing a software bot to take on these activities, companies:
Lastly, information that was previously time-consuming to collect and the process is readily available with robotic automation software, increasing productivity while reducing insufficiency and human errors.
There are a variety of benefits for businesses that choose to use robotic process automation. According to Protiviti 2019 Global RPA Results, the biggest benefits of RPA are increased productivity, better quality, and higher customer satisfaction.
Let’s take a closer look at the benefits RPA technology brings into every business domain.
RPA increases the number of items being put through a process or system, also known as throughput, and reduces operating and staffing costs. As for speed, consider how long it takes for a human to fill out a data sheet. A robotic process automation system can do this in a fraction of the time. Over months or years, that’s a substantial amount of time and money saved.
Implementation of robotic process automation allows businesses to improve their operations by getting more work done in less time. With robotic process automation, companies can add or change processes as needed.
A recent UiPath survey shows that 66% of interviewed decision-makers think RPA restructures existing work, enabling their employees to have more human interactions, and focus on customers and more meaningful, strategic tasks.
Robotic process automation reduces mistakes made by employees performing mundane tasks like data entry, meaning fewer operational risks.
Having RPA on your side minimizes error-prone manual processes and allows you to expand your virtual workforce effortlessly.
Customers are a crucial part of what makes any business successful. You can improve your customer service by using RPA technology to reduce human error, leading to enhanced customer satisfaction. Today, many companies use RPA software to automate every step of the customer’s data validation and data sets integration, freeing employees from manual and time-consuming procedures.
Robotic process automation improves quality by increasing audibility and consistency with standardized processes, which gives your business a highly recognized brand for high-quality services and products.
Each step of the RPA process is recorded for later audibility, and unlike traditional IT integration, RPA doesn’t have an invasive integration process. RPA automates apps against their existing interfaces and updates information in other apps.
As claimed in Pega’s research, 63% said that RPA is a significant component of digital transformation, and this isn’t surprising. Robotic process automation software helps organizations connect all the dots of process and integration relatively fast and at little risk. As for large enterprises, the implementation of RPA software allows extending the life of legacy applications by automating their user interfaces.
Businesses can step up automation endeavors by supplementing cognitive tech such as machine learning, speech recognition, and natural language processing to RPA.
RPA requires proper design, planning, and management to strengthen the business. Here are some tips for the successful implementation of robotic process automation into your business environment.
When you’re defining the needs of your business, you need to determine what functions you can improve and where you can remove certain tasks, such as equipment and services, to improve the flow of business. Your expectations need to be realistic.
A useful way to do this is to start with a clear hierarchy of business goals, and then figure out exactly how RPA can help you achieve them. Managing the expectations of your stakeholders—including individual employees affected by RPA and their managers—will allow them to not only take full advantage of the new technology but also the results of its implementation. Setting goals too high can result in partial business failure. Use data to help you determine where you want your business to be within a reasonable timeframe and create steps that will help you achieve your goals.
RPA is often touted as a mechanism to improve return on investment or reduce costs. But what if we focus more on enhancing the customer experience that will lead to what we mentioned above?
For instance, large enterprises such as eCommerce platforms or global accommodations services hire thousands of customer support operators. But still, customers need to wait in the queue to get answers to their requests. An RPA chatbot can reduce the waiting time—a virtual agent can answer immediately and cover the most popular requests in no time. Such automation levels up the quality of the service, leading to enhanced user experience and return on investment.
When a company sets up an RPA without the IT department’s involvement, it’s running the risk of getting it wrong when it comes to IT architecture, infrastructure, and security. If the IT team doesn’t know that the business unit is using RPA for one of its processes, that application—and the information it stores—likely doesn’t qualify for the corporate disaster recovery plan.
Inform your tech specialists about the early stages of making the transition from the traditional ways of business operation to the innovative techniques of using RPA. Allow your tech specialists to become familiar with the new technology and make improvements when and where necessary. The earlier you introduce RPA, the sooner adjustments can be made and incorporated into your business.
Many RPA implementations fail because organizations pay little attention to planning. In a rush to release something, some companies neglect to thoroughly think through the exchange information process between different bots, which can disrupt the business process in the future.
According to Sanjay Srivastava, a chief digital officer of Genpact, before implementing RPA, it is necessary to think through the design of the operating model and outline how the various bots will interact with each other. In addition, some neglect to discuss the changes that new operations will have on the organization’s business processes. CIOs should plan for this well in advance to avoid business disruptions.
What impact does your company have on people? Is the impact negative or positive? If your business’ impact on customers and other people is positive, work hard to continue to provide exceptional service and improve where you may be lacking. If your influence is negative, find out through customer feedback where your company is going wrong and strive to make consistent improvements in your company until your impact on people begins to change for the better.
No less important is paying attention to how it affects your employees. Discuss the further professional development of employees whose work will now be done by RPA software. Making sure that they understand RPA implementation doesn’t mean that software bots will replace them in the workplace—only help them more efficiently perform higher-value tasks than waste time on boring mundane activities. Also, it’s essential to monitor how employees react to innovations, collect feedback, and track changes in productivity.
If you think that robotization will take root in a company, invest in training your specialists to support and develop the system. This may not seem evident at first glance, but it will be cheaper and many times more effective in the long run than hiring professionals on the side.
Once you completed the previous steps, your business is ready to integrate innovative RPA technology into the entire development lifecycle of your company. It may take a few weeks for all the technology to reach every sector in your business, but it will happen—and when it does, you will notice how the flow of your business improves and how much time and money RPA saves your company.
Our client had a product—an intelligent platform that enables digital labor powered by cloud computing, robotic process automation, and artificial intelligence (AI) to automate high-risk, manual, rule-based administrative processes, radically enhancing agility in large enterprises.
The client’s business began to soar, and the initial platform was not scalable enough for expansion. The need for rapid functionality extension, and thus, architecture enhancements, became a top priority. NIX migrated the core system into the cloud to expand automation capabilities, developed new products to extend system functionality for covering diverse enterprise needs, and provided new, intuitive, up-to-date UI for end-user and administrative activities. The solution included:
NIX decreased time-to-market and created a scalable, сloud-based AI RPA platform with sophisticated plug-in architecture, perfect for handling increasing amounts of work and connecting new products easily. The solution allows the client to empower large enterprises to take automation to the next level, accelerate digital strategies, and transform workflows.
RPA is the future of industries. As new technologies like OCR and AI come into play to further complement robotic process automation, it will significantly impact operations. RPA systems powered by artificial intelligence can influence decision-making processes. It allows the automation of high-level processes that would typically be carried out by employees.
RPA not only provides the tools to solve application problems but also tunes in to work primarily with processes, not limited to the automation of specific information systems. Robotic process automation software helps by asking the right questions and can even help on the way to formalizing business processes.
If your business is facing repetitive manual tasks that are time-consuming and reduce efficiency, then it may be time to implement robotic process automation into your business. As a Microsoft Certified solution partner, NIX utilizes the latest tools and methodologies in all of our work. Let us help you build an RPA solution that suits your business needs and facilitates your growth.
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